Therefore I say to you, do not do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?
Doctors and researchers say that stress is more responsible than anything else for almost every disease. Stress can cause anxiety and depression. It contributes to heart disease, cancer, and arthritis. Stress can lead to substance abuse. It can and often does contribute to domestic violence and the list goes on. One of the main contributors to stress is worry.
Remedy for Worry
Here Jesus gives us God’s remedy for worry: “Take no (anxious) thought for your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?” (Matthew 6:25).
Remember, Jesus is showing us in this sermon how different we are to be from the people in the world. God calls us to a life of faith in Him, and He calls us to trust in His care for us. “If God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?” (6:30).
Faith Is the Key
Faith is the key. How can we grow in faith? One way to grow in faith is by meditating on God’s Word: “Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17).
As we meditate on the Scriptures and see what God did in the past, we come to understand that He is able and willing to do the same in the present. As we take His Word to heart, our worries began to fade away.
Depending on God
Another way that our faith grows is through life experience and seeing the faithfulness of God worked out in our lives. As a young pastor, when I came to teaching on the subject of living by faith, I often found myself having to tell other people’s “faith” stories. I hadn’t yet lived enough to have many of my own. I remember saying to the Lord that it would be really nice to have a few faith stories of my own. What I didn’t realize was that to get my own stories, I had to experience the kinds of circumstances that cause a person to depend on God, and in some cases, to be shut up to no one but the Lord and watch Him come through. I have had numerous opportunities to trust Him in the ensuing years and have learned by experience that there’s no need to worry, just as Jesus said.
Worry is a pastime of unbelievers—“After all these things the Gentiles seek” (6:32). For the believer, worry should seem unnatural because Jesus said, “Your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things” (6:32). We have a heavenly Father, and He is intimately involved in our lives and committed to our well-being. As Jesus said, “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven!” (Matthew 7:11).
Lesson on Trust
Jesus gives us a lesson on trust from nature: “Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” (6:26). The lilies of the field, Jesus said, are also beautifully clothed. If God takes care of birds and flowers, will He not much more take care of us? Of course He will.
God’s provision doesn’t always come in the way or time that we think it will, but as someone once said, “God is seldom early, but never late.” Since Jesus tells us not to worry about our lives, we can rest that He’s got things covered. Our lives are in the Father’s hands.